Who's in Milwaukee (Goalie Edition)?
Posted By: Aaron Sims
I have received a number of e-mails asking me who will be back in an Admirals uniform this coming season. I figured I’d do this by position, starting in net.
has earned the chance to be the number-one goalie heading into the 2011-2012 season. The former second-round draft choice was tremendous in the playoffs for Milwaukee this past spring. He faced an AHL-high 35.5 shots per game in the playoffs and tied for 4th
in postseason save percentage at .931.
The question is who will the backup be? Chet Pickard
is a former first-rounder who struggled last season with both Milwaukee and ECHL Cincinnati. At the recent Nashville developmental camp, Pickard showed how hard he’s been working. Physically, Pickard is in incredible shape. He has improved his fitness level greatly each time he’s been tested by the Predators. Now, he needs to translate that improved fitness into his game.
is a player that had a limited showing late last season with Milwaukee. He split his four decisions with the Admirals with a .914 save percentage. Engren led his team to the Finnish Elite League in 2010. He dazzled at times with Milwaukee and struggled at times, too.
Nashville needs to be sold that Smith is the organization’s “number 3”. Smith has had back-to-back great postseasons. He’s won an ECHL title and was great last season when forced into action. If Nashville feels he can fill the role, the position is set.
I wonder, though, if Nashville wants more work for Anders Lindback
. He’s on a two-way deal and his growth may have been stunted last season as he sat on the bench while Vezina finalist Pekka Rinne
sparkled. Lindback could come to Milwaukee and the Preds could sign a cheap veteran (Ty Conklin
would be perfect). Lindback and Smith would share the load in Milwaukee, moving Engren and Pickard to Cincinnati or elsewhere.
Barring moves, the only certainty as of now appears to be Smith.